Category Archives: moontime

How to Discuss Menstruation With Your Child

by DeAnna L’am

“This is my Moon Flow,” I said to Ellah, who was about 4 at the time, when she saw me changing a pad. I never saw my Mom changing pads, and hence committed to not hiding my natural flow from my daughter. Without my flow, my girl would not have been born… How could this be anything but a source of joy in my ability to give birth? An ability she will one day share!

“All women flow with the moon,” I added, “and you, too, will flow when you become a woman.” Ellah smiled with the promise, and at four years of age this was enough. I didn’t refer to the flow as “blood” until much later, since I didn’t want Ellah to associate it with an “Ouwy.” The purpose with young children, both girls and boys, is to introduce, and talk about, this natural bodily function in the same neutral way as you do when talking about eating. Gradually, as the child matures, it is good to tie the flow to its purpose, which is a woman’s ability to give life.

If you find that you have some charge about your menstruation (such as physical or emotional pain) it is best not to introduce the subject to your child until you work through your difficulty and gain some balance for yourself.

Generally, it is best not to bombard children with information, but to wait for their questions. When Ellah was about seven, she asked me where does the Moon Flow come from? My answer was inspired by the Waldorf educational approach, and I explained that the Moon Flow is “Mom’s Nest.”

“Mommy’s Nest???” she asked in amazement.

“Yes,” I said. “When a Mama bird prepares for a baby bird to be born, she makes a nest. She flies in the forest and collects leaves, feathers, boughs, branches, and bits of fluff, and she weaves a nest for the baby bird to comfortably lie in.”

“Well…” I continued, “it’s the same with me. And with all women! Every month a woman’s body prepares a nest in her tummy, where a baby can grow. Her wise body gathers tissue and blood from inside her, and makes a warm and comfortable nest. Then, if no baby starts to grow, there is no need for the nest. So Mamma’s wise body sends the nest out in a big whoosh. That’s why the flow is red, because it’s made of all the good, nourishing blood that was ready to help the baby grow.”

“Every month,” I shared with my daughter, “I thank my body for being such a miracle, and for knowing how to make a baby grow inside… I also thank it for the wisdom of letting go of the nest, when I don’t need it…” Ellah was fully satisfied. She had a clear picture in her mind, and the Moon Flow made sense to her.

Telling your child a story of this nature doesn’t only encapsulate the physical facts associated with menstruation. It allows you to start instilling the awe, which our bodies deserve for their amazing abilities. Beyond that, you are actively bucking the cultural current of taboo and shame around menstruation. You are raising a girl or a boy who will have a different narrative with which to counter the cultural beliefs when they encounter them.

barAbout the Author:

DeAnna-Sacramento-WEBDeAnna L’am, speaker, coach, and trainer, is the author of ‘Becoming Peers – Mentoring Girls Into Womanhood’ and ‘A Diva’s Guide to Getting Your Period’. She is the founder of Red Moon School of Empowerment for Women & Girls™ . She is the founder of Red Tents in Every Neighborhood.

A pioneer in Menstrual Empowerment, DeAnna has been transforming lives around the world for over 20 years, by helping women & girls love themselves unconditionally!  She teaches women how to dissolve PMS symptoms; draw strength from their cycle (rather than be at its mercy); model self-acceptance, self-care, and self-esteem to their daughters; and hold Red Tents in their communities. Visit DeAnna at: www.deannalam.com

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DeAnna L’am is excited to announce…

2nd Annual Red Tents In Every Neighborhood ~ Global Summit:

OUR DAUGHTERS, OURSELVES

 “A Mother-Daughter Interview in the Red Tent”
a New Video by Dr. Isadora Leidenfrost  and Teresa Moorehouse will be featured during the Summit.

What messages did your mother give you about being a Woman?

What messages are you offering your daughter, or son, about being a Woman?

What legacy would you like to pass to Today’s Girls?

About the Red Tent World Summit:

Join me to listen to Womb Wisdom, to Honor Our Mothers, Ourselves, and Today’s Girls! Get Inspired by Leading Visionary Women from Around the World: U.S.A, Spain, Austria, Italy, France, Ireland, India, Mexico, Chile, and New Zealand, with Special Guest – MARIANNE WILLIAMSON!

Our FREE Global Summit will air February 1-28,

and you can watch it from the comfort of your home!

join-the-telesummit

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Filed under ageing, and Hormone Cycle, blood, coming of age, daughter, DeAnna L'am, growing up, menstruation, moon, mooncycle, moontime, mother, motherhood, parenting, red tent, Reproductive Health, womb

HorMoon Awareness Guide

by Leslie Botha

Click here to download the HorMoon Awareness Guide

HorMoon Awareness Guide

 A new book!

Understanding Your Mind, Mood, and Hormone Cycle was written for women who want to understand the sometimes, confusing physical and psychological changes they experience each month. It is also suggested reading for men who deal with hormonal women daily; and for educators, healthcare and social welfare professionals who support women of all ages that are struggling with physical and behavioral issues caused by hormonal changes. It is the product of a nine-years of research, analysis, and writing.

Purchase the book for $24.93 on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Understanding-Your-Mind-Hormone-Cycle/dp/0989010104/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374691726&sr=8-1&keywords=leslie+botha

Purchase the book on amazon

This richly illustrated, pioneering, book is co-authored by Leslie Carol Botha and H. Sandra Chevalier-Batik, with original graphics by Nicholas Batik. Medical researcher, H. Sandra Chevalier-Batik provides extensive clinical background to support the findings of this book. The conversational writing style makes it easy and compelling to read, while the richly footnoted text makes this a valuable resource for professional healthcare providers. The book explores on the very essence of a woman’s being — the fundamental nature of the female hormone cycle; and was written to fill the void of practical, menstrual health education that focuses on understanding the delicate mind/body connection — a connection that has the power to bring about health or disease in the body. Contrary to current medical thinking and pharmaceutical industry messaging that encourages women to deny, ignore, suppress and replace their natural hormone production with synthetic hormone birth control and hormone replacement therapy, Botha and Chevalier-Batik believe that the hormone cycle is the foundation of women’s health and well being. Modern medicine has promoted the concept of specialization, encouraging women to consult specialists to treat isolated aspects of our body and mind, rather than consider our body as an integrated system, and exploring the relationship of the hormone cycle with other cycling systems in our body. Creating health begins with a shift in this perspective to one that recognizes the whole body is greater than the sum of its parts; a shift that recognizes that health is our birthright and represents our natural state. Such a change in perception can change how we express vibrant health and inner peace. Using the tools and information provided in this book, women can learn to perceive symptoms as biometric feedback from our bodies about our diet, lifestyle and the state of our mental, emotional, and spiritual self. These symptoms are the “tell” for conditions such as: hormone imbalances, depression, mental confusion, exhaustion, autoimmune disorders, allergies, and reproductive disorders. The purpose of this book, is to help you tap into the magnificent intelligence of your body and interpret its profound language to finally understand your mind, mood, and hormone cycle. Using the tools and exercises provided you will learn to live with in your hormone cycle to prevent re-occurring gynecological problems and mental/emotional imbalances; Perhaps for the first time in your life, you will feel like you can reach your full potential by acknowledging your strength and who you truly are. It is our goal to open your eyes to the real you — a woman who can trust herself, has confidence in her actions, understands her feelings and knows how to create a fulfilling life by living with her hormone cycle With brilliant simplicity, the authors tie the menstrual cycle into the other natural cycles of the universe and to the Paleolithic wise women who tracked their cycles on antler bones. These wise women understood that menstruation was vital natural cycle that held power. These foremothers became the first mathematicians, agriculturists, and healers by applying their menstrual wisdom to their culture’s survival. It is imperative that we understand all of the cycles in our lives. Women must be pro-active in all aspects of their wellness. Education and the willingness to ask questions and demand answers is a start.

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Filed under ageing, and Hormone Cycle, beauty, coming of age, growing up, Guest Blogger, healing, Leslie Botha, Menopause, menstruation, menstruation history, Mood, moon, mooncycle, moontime, PMS, Post Menopausal, Reproductive Health, Understanding Your Mind

An Invitation into the Red Tent (sound meditation mp3)

by Delphine Demore, PhD

It is dark inside the tent, with the light muted by the enclosure. At this late afternoon hour, the entire dwelling is tinted red and pink and orange. Soon the sun will set and the glow of the fire and burning coals will be the only light. You sit in the Elder’s chair, near the doorway. The fire is burning brightly and there is water in the clay jars at the other side of the room, to keep it cool. There is food, cooked ahead and preserved, with fruit and cheese. A week of freedom from preparations, child care, household chores, marital responsibilities, a time all the women come to treasure. Tonight, there are a few newly bleeding girls joining the Red Tent. They have not been to the Women’s tent before and they are curious, eager but worried too. Like all fledglings, they anticipate and fear what is unfamiliar. You smile, remembering your first time in the tent. The tenderness you feel for the newly fertile girls was shown to you then. The tradition of women handing down their wisdom and teaching their daughters is ancient and honored here.

11-minute Guided Sound Meditation. Featuring the song “Dream Wisdom” by David R. Maracle

You hear the approach of the first woman. She is a young matron with 2 small children. She smiles at you and you anoint her forehead with the blessing oil. You embrace, kissing each other on each cheek. She takes a seat in the circle around the stones. Soon others join her, standing in line for their anointing, embracing you and each other with warmth and welcome. The first timers come together, finding courage in numbers. They are welcomed in kind.

When all have arrived, you begin the Women’s Chant, calling on the protection of the Divine Mother. The women join hands and chant, filling the tent with their sweet voices. You pour the first cup of water on the stones in the center, sending up a burst of steam into the hole above the circle. Your chant begins to quiet and your prayers are sent out into the sky.

The youngest women rise and address the new arrivals. They tell of their first time in the tent and their first menses. They honor and bless the girls, welcoming them into the circle of women. They are each handed a branch of lavender and rosemary, as a symbol of love, peacefulness, protection and healing. The other women come forward, one at a time, in age order, to bless the girls and tell a short story of their own blood time. Finally, you are left to speak. Though you have not bled for a long time, you often volunteer to anchor the Blood Times Tent. All the women come if they can. Many are needed to care for children and do the women’s chores while the bleeding women are sequestered.

The women again join hands and hum softly as another cup of water is thrown on the hot stones. When the steam dies away, there is a collective sigh and everyone relaxes.

As the women begin to talk to each other, in pairs or small groups, enjoying the leisure that their nomadic life prohibits during the rest of the month, your attention drifts and you remember other Blood times, other days, women who were friends and who are gone now. You remember…

You see yourself pressing your lavender and rosemary between stones after your first time. Like the young girls here tonight, you stored them in your amulet. Reaching for the amulet that hangs from your neck, you know that you have them still. You remember bringing your first babe with you, nursing her in the steamy air, content to drift in and out of the conversations, absorbed in the love affair of motherhood. Your other babies were also brought here, but the memory of that one is still sharp in your heart. Your daughter goes to another tent somewhere else, in her husband’s family, taking your granddaughter with her. You wish you saw them more often.

You recall the first time your daughter came to the tent, brave and strong. She was not timid, but walked in with her head high, expecting to be accepted, expecting to belong. As a mother, you had taught her well to honor herself and the sacred mystery that is fertility. You are proud of her. That tradition goes on, wherever your daughter and granddaughter go.

Today, your other daughter is present here, following the Shaman Way rather than the motherhood path. You are proud of her too.

In the tent, friendships are forged and confidences shared. All seek understanding, celebration and solace from each other. You remember your mother, taking her turn as elder in the tent, looking at you with that proud, fierce mother look. Even now, after so long, you miss her. Soon, you will travel that ancient river and be reunited with her. The cycle of life, like the blood flowing here, will go on…

We honor that ancient tradition here today. Taking a deep breath, bring yourself back here to the circle. When you are ready, open your eyes.

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Filed under blood, coming of age, daughter, growing up, Guest Blogger, healing, meditation, memory, menstruation, moon, Moon Lodge, moontime, mother, motherhood, place, Post Menopausal, red tent, red tent experience, ritual, space, transition, Uncategorized, women's stories

Sacredness (The Blood Song)

a song by Shylah Ray Sunshine

“Sacredness (The Blood Song)” by Shylah Ray Sunshine

is featured in the closing credits of the film “Things We Don’t Talk About.”

To purchase the song click here.

 

Shylah Ray Sunshine

Lyrics

My blood is the sacredness of the wombyn within me
My blood is a sacrifice of what could be…
My blood is the sacredness of the wombyn within me
My blood is a ceremony of life flowing to me and through me
My blood is the medicine from the birth of a baby
My blood is a gift to the flowers and the trees
To the Earth and all of humanity…

 

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Filed under "things we don't talk about", blood, Guest Blogger, menstruation, moontime, music from "Things We Don't Talk About", Red Tent TV

Moon Time

By LuAnn Morris

Magickal moon time
I welcome your
Power of transcendence
As I take my worthy place
In the rhythms of
Your universe

My third eye opens wide
As I receive your
Gifts of divine insight
And bathe in your
Sacred crimson life force
Of inspiration

© 2011 LuAnn Morris All Rights Reserved

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Filed under Guest Blogger, moon, moontime, poem, women's stories

A Red Tent Moment

By © 2011-2012 DeAnna L’am

The ‘Red Tent’ hit a nerve.
PublisheThe Red Tentd over a decade ago by Anita Diamant, “The Red Tent” became a best seller. Almost every woman who hears of my Red Tent events typically says: “Oh, I read the book years ago and I LOVED it!” or: “This is my favorite book!”
Why is the ‘Red tent’ such a phenomenon?
It seems that women around the world are touched to their core by this story of the biblical Hebrew tribe of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, told through the lens and voice of its women. At the center of these women’s experience is the “Red Tent”: a space set apart from the hustle and bustle of daily life, where women go to when they menstruate, or get ready to give birth. This is a place where women are allowed to Be rather than continually Do…

Any cycling woman knows the deep yearning for quietude during her Flow time. Every ounce of our body and soul calls for rest, while our culture calls us to keep going, no matter what. The ‘Red Tent,’ ‘Moon Hut,’ or ‘Moon Lodge,’ as they were known in indigenous cultures around the world, was a place of respite for women of old. Contemporary women deeply relate when they read of this. Much more of a fictional novel, “The Red Tent” by Anita Dimant evokes in women a cellular memory of an experience we all shared, for millenniums, around the globe. Once awakened, this memory becomes a need, a yearning, a birthright… We recognize that having a place to go to when we flow, monthly, will make our lives different in profound ways, as well as change the lives of those living close to us, and the world at large! When women have a sacred space to go to when they menstruate, they don’t need to be irritable with their spouse, children, co-workers, or the world. The irritability, which is only a signal from our body that we need to rest and replenish, is no longer needed. Instead, women can nap, dream, draw, journal, knit, bead, sing, paint, dance, sleep, stretch, read, curl up into a ball and shut the world out… Not being expected to tend to others’ needs, for a little window of time, monthly, will contribute to women’s inner peace, and to the harmony in their environment more than anything else I could think of! Yes, I know, women work full time, are single Moms, and would be unable to go to a Red Tent even if there was one in their neighborhood… True. But changing our consciousness around this is a first step, to be followed by little acts which go a long way. Instead of “all-or-nothing” why not start by acknowledging that your body, mind, and heart need to rest (whether you can do it this very moment or not). Acknowledging the need will lead to creative solutions (which can never come when we are not looking for them). It will also lead you to see the benefit of taking as little as 10 minutes in the morning; an hour when the baby naps; or half of your lunch break, in which to create sacred space for yourself. Light a candle, or just lay down and breath. Recognize that a Moon Cycle has passed since your last menstrual period. Exhale deeply, and let go of this cycle, its challenges, and anything in it that no longer serves you… Inhale deeply, and take-in the freshness of this moment, Now. Close your eyes and let your mind drift… Let yourself daydream. Yawn. Stretch. Listen to your body… If a thought surfaces to remind you of your chores or errands, smile and let it go. There will be plenty of time for it later. This moment is for You. This is your own, internal, Red Tent moment, which no one can take away from you (only you, by depriving yourself from it…) Once you start experiencing the well being brought by the consciousness, and practice, of taking some time for yourself at the onset of your Flow, you will never want to go back. Who knows, you may even come up with creative ways for having more and more every month… You deserve it!

DeAnna L’am, (B.A.) speaker, coach, and trainer, is author of Becoming Peers – Mentoring Girls Into Womanhood and A Diva’s guide to Getting Your Period. She is founder of Red Moon School of Empowerment for Women & Girls™. Her pioneering work has been transforming women’s & girls’ lives around the world, for over 20 years.

DeAnna helps women & girls love themselves unconditionally! She specializes in helping women make peace with their cycle, instructs Moms in the art of welcoming girls to empowered womanhood, and trains women to hold RED TENTS in their communities. Visit her at: www.deannalam.com

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Filed under DeAnna L'am, menstruation, Moon Lodge, moontime, red tent, The Red Tent

The Red Line

By Bethany Webster

In my blood there is poetry

In my blood are ancient stories

You are there, too, my sister

The red line all the way back to the beginning

A red thread I hold onto for days every month

A red path that appears beneath my feet

A red echo I hear through my inner yearning

My punctuated flow is the steady tempo of a drumbeat

That life plays through me

The drumbeat that is played in the bodies of women

Across the planet

The drumbeat of all of us bleeding is the heartbeat of the earth

We are Gaia’s heart in perfect timing with the tides

That keep the earth turning

Woman, we must rise up

Removing the veil of shame

We are ancient

We who trace the red line

We who hold the red thread

We are She in whom courses the river of humanity
As sacred as the highest temple

The holiest of chalices

The spiraling path of birth and death

The womb is a cradle of both

We are a gate between worlds

© 2012 Bethany Webster

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Filed under Bethany Webster, blood, menstruation, moontime, poem, red tent